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Old 06-25-2007, 06:52 PM   #1
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AC cooling challenge and recommendations for a better insulated coach for our next Diesel purchase.

Although new to this lifestyle, we love the journey we are taking in our 2007 Class A. But, our first purchase 3 months ago has lead to disappointment in the insulation of the coach and the inability to keep it cool in the hot summer sun of Florida.

We have a 2007, 39' GS Diesel with 2 AC's (15.5 btu and 13.5 btu). They both run constantly at high fan speed during the day and simply do not cool the coach under 84 degrees when in direct sunlight. I know Florida's summer heat is a challenge having lived here 25 years, but when we go fulltime in a coach, I don't want to bake like a loaf of bread at lunchtime.

The dealer has serviced both AC's and says they are working perfectly. They do cycle on and off during the cooler evening hours and sleeping temperatures get down to 73 degrees easily. It's only when parked in the sun with temperatures in the 90's that we have trouble cooling down.

I have heard that Newmar has superb insulation, followed perhaps by Monaco, Holiday Rambler and Tiffin. Newmar and Tiffin seem to utilize a different cooling system in that there are no compressor units in the ceiling and compressor noise is illiminated. The only noise is that of forced air like that in a conventional home.

Constructive feedback is appreciated and welcomed. I really need to know the best coach made for Florida's summer swelters.

Coaches we are looking at are Monaco Knight, Newnar Ventana and Tiffin Phaeton.

Thanks in advance .... Ron
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Old 06-25-2007, 06:52 PM   #2
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AC cooling challenge and recommendations for a better insulated coach for our next Diesel purchase.

Although new to this lifestyle, we love the journey we are taking in our 2007 Class A. But, our first purchase 3 months ago has lead to disappointment in the insulation of the coach and the inability to keep it cool in the hot summer sun of Florida.

We have a 2007, 39' GS Diesel with 2 AC's (15.5 btu and 13.5 btu). They both run constantly at high fan speed during the day and simply do not cool the coach under 84 degrees when in direct sunlight. I know Florida's summer heat is a challenge having lived here 25 years, but when we go fulltime in a coach, I don't want to bake like a loaf of bread at lunchtime.

The dealer has serviced both AC's and says they are working perfectly. They do cycle on and off during the cooler evening hours and sleeping temperatures get down to 73 degrees easily. It's only when parked in the sun with temperatures in the 90's that we have trouble cooling down.

I have heard that Newmar has superb insulation, followed perhaps by Monaco, Holiday Rambler and Tiffin. Newmar and Tiffin seem to utilize a different cooling system in that there are no compressor units in the ceiling and compressor noise is illiminated. The only noise is that of forced air like that in a conventional home.

Constructive feedback is appreciated and welcomed. I really need to know the best coach made for Florida's summer swelters.

Coaches we are looking at are Monaco Knight, Newnar Ventana and Tiffin Phaeton.

Thanks in advance .... Ron
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Old 06-26-2007, 01:18 AM   #3
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welcome to IRV2
We spent 5 months in Fl this past winter and found our Newmar Kountry Star well insulated,
We were in full sun no trees and had no problem with cooling the coach. What we also did was have windshield covers made [coach faced south]
and believe me they do a great job to keep the coach cool.
We also had Newmar install awnings on all our windows so when it rains we could have open windows.
Don't get upset if not to many people respond right away as Newmar is holding it's international rally this week in Wyoming.
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Old 06-26-2007, 03:54 AM   #4
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We have found that our Dutch Star is a little harder to cool than our previous Kountry Star. I believe this is due to the paint. The DS has darker paint than the KS (which was mostly white in color) and the darker paint absorbs more of the suns energy, making the airs work harder. However, they are able to do the job.

On travel days, we start running the generator and airs in the mornings so that the airs get a running start at the afternoon sun and heat.

When parked, we use our windshield suncreen when facing south or west.
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Old 06-26-2007, 04:13 AM   #5
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You are mistaken about how Newmar AC works. The compressors ARE on the roof. The difference is there are seperate return and output registers arrayed in the ceiling, unlike alot that have a central return, which can be noiser. And using a GOOD solar OUTSIDE screen will help alot in any coach. My Mountain Aire has a windshield that is 66 inches TALL....that is a terrible amount of heat gain when the sun is anywhere close to it.
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Old 06-26-2007, 10:05 AM   #6
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RonL Welcome to irv2
Hear's a link to Newmar construction site and dealers. NEWMAR
We were in Tenn. last year and temps were in the 90's-100's and coach was cool enough wife says to cool. Although windshield wasn't facing the sun in afternoon if it was would have a sun screen on windshield but wife likes a clear view.
Enjoy the forums and do post often.
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Old 06-26-2007, 05:59 PM   #7
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RonL,

One thing we did last week when we just had 30 amp service at the rally was to open the vent register on the air conditioner cover part way, that seems to let a lot more cool air flow come out of the unit. I usually also do this when we are in Florida using both air conditioners and the coach stays cool and usually they cycle on/off when the outdoor temps have been in the 80's and 90's.

We also use the windshield sunscreen and that makes a difference.

Ron
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Old 06-27-2007, 01:38 AM   #8
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I have my coach setup in an unshaded cement lot on a 20 amp feed and one AC going. It has been easily been maintaining 77 degrees which is two degrees cooler than we keep our home. I live in Tampa Bay Florida and the temps have been hovering at close to 100 degrees during the day with effective temps of 105. The shades and sunscreens are open all day. Some complain that their coaches can't keep them cool but then they seem mostly to be those aiming for around 70 degrees which is extremly costly and wasteful to maintain. A 30 plus degree temp differential is a bit much to expect and to pay for.

My Winnibago Adventurer is only 35 feet and is white. Something larger and darker coloured, such as what is now become popular with the black and brown full body paint schemes, would be much harder to keep kool.
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Old 06-27-2007, 05:34 AM   #9
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I would consider 77-79 degrees too hot and unacceptable.

72-75 degrees isn't too much to ask for. If you can't get your coach to these temperatures, there is something wrong with the insulation in the coach, and that is usually the case.

I would check out Newmar for sure, as they have a good insulation package.

The next motorhome we buy will surely have better insulation than the one we currently own.
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:45 AM   #10
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High end coaches usually have much better insulation. And better insulated window glass too. That's part of what you pay for. But they may also have bigger windshields, more windows, more roof vents (just thin plastic), etc. as well, with more heat gain.

I'd look at Newmar, higher end Monaco/HR/Beaver models, American Coach and Tiffin Allegro Bus.
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Old 06-27-2007, 06:46 PM   #11
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My thanks to everyone who responded with ideas and suggestions. It seems that we are not alone when it comes to overheating in Florida, Arizona or other high temperature states.

Our coach does have very dark full body paint, white roof and thermopane windows. We do open the AC dumps to assist in faster cooling but after 12 noon, it never gets close to even 75 degrees during the daytime. Nightime is not a problem.

The solar screen or shade on the front windshield as well as side windows is a very good idea no matter what coach manufacturer you own, when parking in direct sunlight. I will check on that at campingworld.com.

I am detecting a preference from coach owners for the quality insulation and overall construction of Newmar Coaches. Yes, the compressors are on the roof, but the duct system in a Newmar reduces the compressor noise with their one side cool, one side return of warm air for better circulation (in addition to sufficient insulation). The noise level of laboring AC compressors is annoying on a constant basis, but the lower decible level of forced air like that in a conventional home would be much more acceptable. Proving once again, that you get what you pay for. My limited research has shown that Tiffin, Phaeton has a similar AC cooling system and they also have a quality coach for the money.

Our original purchase preference was for a Newmar Ventana, but cost restraints and dealer willingness (or unwillingness) to negotiate a reasonable price restricted us financially, so we purchased another manufacturers coach. No, we are not regretfull. We love our GS coach, but had the dealer taken us seriously, we would be driving a Newmar today. Strange, even after driving up in our new 2007 GS, inquiring to purchase a Newmar, the dealer jacked us off on the trade price. $15k over a comparable trade with a same priced Monaco Knight, comparing apples to apples, feature for feature. Is there really truth in the apparent common knowledge that Newmar has a higher markup? If so, they surely want to sell only a few units, at a higher profit margin. What ever happened to the stack it high and sell it cheap pillosophy? Hey, it works for Fleetwood and they offer a whole lot of amenities to their not so insulated coaches, including the Discovery 40-x, which is a looker.

All that aside, I have learned of a Arizona, Newmar dealer who discounts 25% and since we have friends in that area who we would love to see again, we would be attentive to pursue with them. We have a preference for a new coach, but would consider a rare, like new, under 5k mile unit, be it Ventana or Kountry Star. Problem, is our trade. It's hard to trade in the same model year without taking a beating. But, that is yet another topic of conversation.

Anyhow, I have learned alot from your replies and thank one and all for your informative input. If anyone has specific suggestions or recommendations for window covering or solar sun shades, please forward the specifications for review. Until I can put a deal together to upgrade to a Newmar, or Tiffin Phaeton, I'll have to invest in a quick yet limited fix to our current coach.

Thanks and it's great to be here.
RonL
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Old 06-27-2007, 07:55 PM   #12
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FrontRangeRVer:
I would consider 77-79 degrees too hot and unacceptable.

72-75 degrees isn't too much to ask for. If you can't get your coach to these temperatures, there is something wrong with the insulation in the coach, and that is usually the case.

I would check out Newmar for sure, as they have a good insulation package.

The next motorhome we buy will surely have better insulation than the one we currently own. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Actually it is a bit too much and well below the recommended standard for living in Southern Florida which is and I quote:

"During the summer months, set your thermostat at the highest comfortable setting. Progress Energy recommends a setting of 78-80. You can save 7 to 10 percent on your cooling costs for each degree above 78."

77-79 is actually taking a one degree liberty on the recommended range.

72-75 for air conditioning in this part of the South is considered to be wastefull and indeed very extreme.

It took me a little while to get acclimated to this after coming here from New England but now I find it quite comfortable as do most of my neighbors and aquaintences.
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Old 07-13-2007, 05:33 AM   #13
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The best coach I had regarding handling hot weather was a 1986 non-slide Bluebird. It had small front windows and rubber backed side curtins. It had diamond plate on the roof that acted as a reflector/heatshield for the main roof. I could normally do just fine with one roof air running for most of the day. From about 2-4 pm would have to run both on really hot days.
Then I had an 04 two slide Bluebird. No roof plate and had big windows--took both air conditioners a lot of the time.
Current Coach is #2 behind the old bird--no plate,small front windows,standard day/night shades,etc. I need to run 2 of 3 cruiseairs most hot days.
On all of them having the window awnings out made a big difference. Going "back" to a non slide coach has been great for many reasons, inluding hot and cold weather comfort.

So, if hot weather comfort was the only parameter, one should be looking at the older Bluebirds. That extra diamond plate heat shield on the roof made all the difference in the world. The downside to it was, coupled with the side rails, was all the extra holes in the roof to mount it
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Old 07-14-2007, 12:31 PM   #14
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Just the other day I was shopping for a new MH. It was close to 90 out and all the different coaches were sitting in the sun on the lot. Most I looked at were stifling inside with no A/C on. The we walked into the Monacos. Both the Knight and the Diplomat were comfortable inside with NO A/C running! I couldn't believe the difference in insulation! The others were: Damon, Winnebago and Itasca.
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